Govt stresses academic support

govt stresses academic support

Education Minister Anek Laothamatas delivers a speech at the opening of the 22nd Congress of the Indo-Pacific Prehistory Association in Chiang Mai yesterday.

Anek Laothamatas, Minister of Higher Education, Science, Research and Innovation, yesterday highlighted his ministry's work in supporting the study of history, archaeology, and cultural heritage, especially the creation of two academies.

He was speaking during the opening of the 22nd Congress of the Indo-Pacific Prehistory Association (IPPA22), which kicked off yesterday at the Le Méridien Marriott, Chiang Mai. The conference will last until Saturday.

The gathering aims to provide archaeologists with opportunities to exchange research ideas. Almost 800 people have registered to attend the conference.

“We’ve promoted the integration of teaching, research and innovation,” Mr Anek said, referring to the work of his ministry. “We’ve pushed forward this task through a number of agencies, including the Thailand Academy of Social Sciences, Humanities and Arts (TASSHA) and Thailand Academy of Sciences (TAS).”

The TASSHA aims to promote research and development in the fields of history, archaeology and cultural heritage and turn knowledge into economic value for sustainable and inclusive growth, he said.

Mr Anek said that the TAS provides a platform for scientists, research institutes and universities. The academy helps advance science and technology development in the country, he said.

“Not only do we support the country’s competitiveness, but we would [also] like to ensure sustainable development of the creative economy.”

The TASSHA focuses on five areas: Suvarnabhumi Studies, Global Studies, Sufficiency Economy, National Museums and Fine Arts, and Local Artisans through university networks, he said.

Both academies feature ideas from various disciplines and sources, including academia, local communities, funders, industry, policymakers and the general public, he said.

“The TASSHA and TAS will ultimately strengthen higher education and frontier research in Thailand, Asean and Indo-Pacific regions,” he said, adding almost 600 papers will be presented by scholars at the event.